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Graduate programs

The Faculty of Science at the University of Waterloo is one of Canada's leading institutions for graduate studies. In keeping with our hands-on philosophy, many programs incorporate practical experience through industry-related research projects, field work, practicums, or internships. Some programs are also available through the co-op system.

Our reputation for excellence and innovation provides our Graduate Students an edge in a competitive world. Many have gone on to promising careers in business, industry, and government along with major universities in Canada and around the world.

Master's degree programs

A Master of Science (MSc) is available in all departments in the Faculty of Science. Depending on the area of study, there is an option to obtain a (A) coursework-based degree or (B) thesis-based degree. These programs may take up to two years to complete. 

(A) Coursework option - programs are designed to provide specific knowledge and skills that are required for particular professions. This option is for those looking to enter industry after completion instead of pursuing a PhD. 

(B) Thesis option - programs require a large research component and deliver the academic stimulation and training that accompany research activity. This option is for those looking to eventually obtain a PhD.

PhD degree programs

A Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) is available in all departments in the Faculty of Science to those who have successfully graduated from a master's degree in a relevant discipline from a recognized institution. This program is research intensive and involves components of coursework, in-field study, article submissions, and thesis defence. This degree may take up to five years to complete. 

NOTE: All units in the Faculty of Science allow direct-entry from a bachelor's degree into a five-year doctoral program. Exemplary candidates should hold extensive research experience along with program requirements specified by each department. Students registered in this option are able to transfer to the master's program under certain circumstances.